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Free Syrian Army general: ‘Clear proof chemical weapons used’

April 24th, 2013
04:27 PM ET

By Samuel Burke, CNN

The chief of staff for the Free Syrian Army said he can confirm that the Syrian regime has used chemical weapons in the Syrian cities of Homs, Aleppo and Otaiba, outside Damascus.

“We took some samples of the soil and of blood. The injured people were observed by doctors and the samples were tested and it was very clear that the regime used chemical weapons,” General Salim Idriss told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Tuesday.

Idriss said his doctors gave the samples to “observers” of the civil war in Syria, but refused to name which groups.

Both Britain and France now say soil samples indicate “some use of chemical weapons.” 

On Monday, the head of Israel’s military intelligence, Brigadier General Itai Brun, said that Israeli assessment shows the Syrian regime has used deadly chemical weapons against armed rebels on a number of occasions in the past few months.

The type of chemical weapons was likely sarin, as well as neutralizing and non-lethal chemical weapons, according to Brun.

It would be logical for the Israelis to know this, according to the general of the Free Syrian Army, because according to him Israel is one of the countries that now has “many, many” security services inside Syria. He said he believes Israel’s Mossad is in the country.

The general also denied Syrian government accusations that the opposition groups have used chemical weapons.

“That is just a kind of propaganda,” the general told Amanpour. “I can tell you that we don’t have chemical weapons. We [wouldn't] like to have such kind of weapons.”

In August of 2012, President Obama said that the movement or use of chemical weapons in Syria would be a “red line” for his administration.

“That would change my calculus. That would change my equation” Obama said.

America remains on the sidelines as it now looks for definitive proof. The question may now be how red must Obama’s red line be?

READ MORE: Is American foreign policy giving the cold shoulder to the world?


Filed under:  Syria
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    April 25, 2013 at 11:44 am | Reply
    • Thinker23

      Al... I do not recall anyone accusing Iraq in HAVING nuclear weapons but feel free to prove me wrong inf you can.

      Iraq was accused of having WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION which include chemical and biological weapons as well. Considering that Saddam Hussein actually USED chemical weapons against his own citizens killing some 60,000 civilians there is little doubt that if he USED weapons of mass destruction he probably HAD them.

      April 25, 2013 at 11:55 am | Reply
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